Northern Ireland news

Police release images of people they wish to speak to over anti-internment bonfire disorder

Police have released images of six people they would like to speak to following disorder at the west Belfast bonfire 
Digital Staff

Police have released six images showing people they wish to speak to in relation to disorder at a west Belfast anti-internment bonfire.

The disturbances in Distillery Street off the Grosvenor Road left three officers requiring hospital treatment after groups of young people hurled petrol bombs, bins, bricks and other masonry at police.

Images on social media showed a single line of police officers in riot gear retreating as they came under sustained attack from crowds of youths, some launching missiles from just yards away from the officers. The bonfire later went ahead as planned.

The PSNI was in the area to protect contractors who were removing material due to be used for an anti-internment bonfires at the request of a landowner.

Bonfires are traditionally lit in some republican areas to mark the introduction of internment without trial in August 1971.

Superintendent Melanie Jones said: "Today we are releasing six images of individuals that we would like to talk to in connection with our ongoing investigations into disorder during which 29 police officers were injured.

"By releasing these images I am hopeful that either the individuals themselves will contact police directly or the wider community can help us identify them.

"We are also aware of videos circulating relating to the disorder and are continuing to examine their contents.

"We are committed to identifying those involved in this significant disorder and we will be relentless in our pursuit in bringing offenders before the courts.

"It is in everybody's interest - as well as in the interest of justice - that those responsible are dealt with appropriately and I would urge anyone who may have any information to bring it forward to Police at Musgrave police station by calling the non-emergency number 101.

"Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, which is 100% anonymous."

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